After reading the Tom's Hardware review of the AMD A8 - 3850 cpu I went to Passmark to see what the CPU rating is and it is 5922. It is, according to Passmark, a blazing fast cpu.
However, Chris Angelini (TH's reviewer) says that for the money "...AMD’s Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition (PassMark: 2607) with a Radeon HD 6570... is almost certainly faster than Llano’s very Athlon-ish design. And the discrete GPU is absolutely quicker than the Radeon HD 6550D logic inside of Llano."
I would have guessed that the discrete HD 6570 gpu is faster than the integrated gpu. However, I would not have guessed that the A8 cpu would be slower than an overclocked Phenom II X3 720.
What exactly does the passmark score mean? Is it something that is best ignored?
Passmark is a pretty inaccurate bench as it takes the average of user submits, which can vary depending on other specs.
The A8 performs about on par with the X3 clock for clock, but has a marginally smaller headroom for OC and is harder to OC also. So its essentially 1 extra core and 100 extra mhz, which makes it only marginally faster.
L3 helps more for gaming than the quad core also, so in certain cases the X3 is indeed a faster processor than the A8.